Best of the blog

This page is meant to help readers filter through some of the better posts and pages among the 200-odd articles on this blog. I break down what is most popular with readers and also highlight some of the better (though maybe less popular) posts that often get overlooked. I hope you find some of the selections interesting!


Most popular amongst readers (based on Views and Comments)

I never wanted to write this post and never thought it would do well. But it comes up among the first 4 searches when googling “Bangkok Gem Scam” and gets the most traffic of any of my posts. Tons of great comments and stories from people who experienced the same thing I did:
Falling for the Bangkok Gem Scam

I didn’t like Rio and I vented here. Some good comments and feedback, it always gets a lot of views:
Why we didn’t like Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

I never thought photos of Autumn would be so popular. One of the advantages to living in Eastern Canada:
Photo Essay – Montreal in the Autumn

I’ve long thought that there are a lot of jerks on different internet forums (not just travel forums). I finally snapped and had to write about it. I’ve been surprised at the reaction it’s gotten:
Travel Forums 101:  dealing with Trolls, Haters, Expats, and other “Uglies”

I loved Ko Phi Phi in Thailand and felt sad and angry to have seen greed ruin the island. This one resonated with anyone who went to Phi Phi before the tsunami:
Ko Phi Phi, Thailand – Paradise ruined

“Negative” posts always do well. I never write these on purpose but there are some destinations that are so overrated, so hyped up as ‘the perfect destination’ that I have to get my opinion in:
Photos of beautiful Santa Teresa – and why we’re not big fans of Costa Rica

I love photos from a plane window. I solicited photos from other bloggers and ended up with some incredible photos and interesting stories:
Photo Essay; Views from a Plane Window

Another negative post on Costa Rica. I found La Fortuna so grossly over-commercialized;
Feeling Ripped off in La Fortuna, Costa Rica

This post was one of a series of posts on South Africa contributed by my ex-boss (and South African) Tony. It was the one I though would be the least popular in the series.
Highlights in and around Johannesburg and Pretoria, South Africa

A practical post which visitors to Montreal seem to find helpful (I have tons of posts on Montreal). Nobody ever comments but it gets good traffic.
Eating recommendations in Montreal


Popular Photo Posts (based on Views and Comments)

I have this one in the above Top 10 most popular posts. Not my favorite photo post but people seem to like it:
Photo Essay – Montreal in the Autumn

Beautiful Trinidad, Cuba. I actually think that my photo post on Havana is better, but this one gets the views and comments:
Photo Documentary and Travel Tips on the beautiful town of Trinidad, Cuba

Gorgeous Cartagena, Colombia. Love this city and I think some of the photos pretty good:
Travel Tips and Photo Essay on Incredible Cartagena, Colombia

Isla Ometepe, Nicaragua. Amazing sunsets and volcanoes. But I never thought it would be as popular:
Photo Essay – Sunsets and Volcanoes in Isla Ometepe, Nicaragua

Venice, Italy. Actually one of my favorite photo posts, I’m surprised it isn’t among the more popular posts on the blog:
Highlights of a trip to Venice, Italy. And why proposing on a gondola is not a good idea…

Vernazza, Italy. Vernazza in on the Cinque Terra and has to be one of the most touristed and photographed places in Italy. But it is a dream location for photography. Along with Venice it’s one of my favorite photo posts:
Photo Essay on gorgeous Vernazza, Cinque Terra

Heidelberg, Germany. I don’t think this is one of my better photo posts but it gets a lot of views.
Overview of touristy Heidelberg, Germany

Iguazu Falls. One of my early posts on the blog. People always enjoy Iguazu, whether from the Argentinian side or Brazilian:
Reasons to see Iguazu Falls from the Argentinian side – Photo Essay

Montreal in the summer. Gets a lot of views, maybe because of the sexy ladies?
Photo Essay – Montreal in the summer


‘Negative” posts

Negative posts always get a lot of views and comments. Again, I don’t plan to write a negative post. But you’re never going to love everywhere you go and this was the case for a few places (most specifically Costa Rica and Brazil which account for 4 of my 10 ‘negative’ posts).

Santa Teresa, Costa Rica. We actually love Santa Teresa but it had nothing to do with the country. Why we didn’t like Costa Rica:
Photos of beautiful Santa Teresa – and why we’re not big fans of Costa Rica

Like the above, my post on Rio gets a lot of comments and is one of the most ‘popular’ posts on the blog. I really disliked the place:
Why we didn’t like Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

This next one is basically a continuation of the one above:
Why I won’t be going back to Brazil

Lake Maninjau, Sumatra. I didn’t hate Lake Mininjau – this was one of my most ‘exotic’ early trips and I admit I was in over my head with culture shock:
Beautiful Lake Maninjau, West Sumatra – and going Rambo on the locals

Lucerne, Switzerland. We didn’t like it at all, especially since we were coming from wonderful Lauterbrunnen:
Feeling ripped off and unhappy in Lucerne, Switzerland

Fussen, Germany. Am I the only one in the world who thinks Neuschwanstein is an overrated tourist trap?
What you need to know about visiting Fussen and Neuschwanstein Castle, Germany

Luang Prabang, Laos. A pretty city. But, in my opinion, very overrated and I don’t understand all the tourists who gush all over it:
Feeling Disappointed in Luang Prabang, Laos

My other negative post on Costa Rica where I tear a hole in La Fortuna. At least I hope so.
Feeling Ripped off in La Fortuna, Costa Rica

San Miguel. I actually really like San Miguel (I love Mexico) and I don’t know how this became a ‘negative post:
Visiting San Miguel de Allende, Mexico (and why it is not the best city in the world)



“Getting to know us” posts

I don’t know why anyone wants to read about us but these posts (except the last) get lots of comments and are ‘sticky’ (people spend a lot of time reading them).

Our ‘About Us’ page:
About Us

About my childhood in Zambia:
My 2 years as a Child Expat in Zambia

On being nominated for the Liebster Award:
We’re Liebster award winners!

On the start of our new adventures in Prague:
Our Apartment in Prague, the cost of Booze, Air Transat, and other stuff…

On announcing our future plans for travel:
Last call, Montreal. Announcing Big Changes to the blog

I thought I would offend some people with this post but lucky for me nobody reads it. But my ex-boss Tony recently told me that it’s his favorite post on the whole blog. It’s also among the first posts I ever wrote:
Religion, morality, and the guiding principle of Shit Happens



My Favorite posts (and places) lost in the archives

I don’t know why some of these posts didn’t quite register with readers. But they are cover some of our favorite destinations and/or contain some of our favorite photos.

Ko Yao Noi, Thailand. Laid back, beautiful Ko Yao Noi. Still one of our favorite memories of Thailand:
Ko Yao Noi, Thailand – Getting away from the mass tourism of Phang Nga Bay

Bacharach, Germany. We loved this place, it’s also where I proposed to Spanky:
Guide on Bacharach (our favorite German town) and Highlights of the Rhine

Florence, Italy. I like this post. I think it’s funny, has great photos, and lots of good information. But (like a lot of my posts on Italy) it has underperformed:
Travel guide and tips on what to see and do in Florence, Italy.

Venice. One of my favorite photo posts. Does ok but I was surprised that it didn’t resonate more with readers:
Highlights of a trip to Venice, Italy. And why proposing on a gondola is not a good idea…

One of my first posts. Very sticky but doesn’t get a lot of views. Forever to be lost in the archives..
Road Trip to Tadoussac, the Saguenay fjord, and Parc des Hautes Gorges de la Riviere Malbaie

Guanajuato, Mexico. A beautiful Mexican town that I was incredibly impressed with. Thought the photography was good too. But it has somehow fallen through the cracks.
Visiting beautiful Guanajuato and Queretaro, Mexico – and how to lose 5 lbs in 2 days

San Andres, Colombia. My first trip with Spanky. Maybe that explains why I like this post more than readers do.
What to see and do in San Andres, Colombia

Havana, Cuba. We didn’t love Havana, but I think this post ranks amongst my better photo posts. I think this one deserves more love.
Photos and Travel Tips on Havana, Cuba

Reutte, Austria. A special place for us and an incredible contrast to nearby Neuschwanstein. Loved it!
Photo Essay and Travel Tips on Reutte and the Ehrenberg Castle Ensemble, Austria

Lauterbrunnen, Switzerland. Another place where we were blown away by the geographic beauty.
Great hikes and stunning views in Lauterbrunnen and the Berner Oberland, Switzerland

Regensburg, Germany. I came here with my mother and found a beautiful, small city with some impressive sights. Very much underrated, maybe because of its out-of-the-way location:
Travel Tips and pleasant surprises – Regensburg, Germany

One of my first posts, this one on Lake Toba is sticky (people spend a lot of time reading it) but it doesn’t get much traffic:
Misadventures in Lake Toba, Sumatra

The above are just a few suggestions among many.



Destination Guides

Early this year I decided to start a new page focusing on country-specific Guides. Some I’ve researched myself, others have been contributed by some popular bloggers based in these countries. They are an alternative to our posts – not everyone is interested in reading about our fights with touts or bouts of diarrhea. Sometimes people just want basic information on a destination to help them plan a trip. I love them because; 1) they get a lot of traffic and people spend a lot of time reading them, 2) I find them useful for my own planning purposes. Some of the most popular:

Contributed by Sarah at Sarahonthe808, this Guide on Hawaii gets the most traffic of all my guides:
Hawaii Guide

This guide on Taiwan by Constance at Foreign Sanctuary is also very popular. The average person spends 4 minutes on the page reading this:
Taiwan Guide

Popular bloggers Samantha and Yeison at My Tan Feet contributed this post. Again, very popular and also gets 4 minutes+ on average:
Costa Rica Guide

This guide by Andreea at Travel around USA gets almost 5 minutes on average:
USA Guide

Another popular guide is this one contributed by Frank about Croatia:
Croatia Guide

A lot more guides HERE. They all do well and we’ll be expanding this section with time.



I hope the above helps filter through all the archives in the blog. I always appreciate feedback: what do you like? What don’t you like? What would you see more of?


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